I am Sick and Tired of Living in a Round Hole

Square peg. Round hole. I use a mallet to make it fit, pounding it until the corners are wedged into the space. The peg has adapted to the opening. Or has it?

I have been working in IT for the past 7 years. Before that I worked for another company for 10 years in different positions requiring me to troubleshoot issues, define processes and otherwise solve problems. I’m good at it, but I’m just a square peg. If I can do something well does that mean I’m happy or satisfied doing it? Have I adapted?

I am unhappy at my job and I’m finding it hard to hide it anymore. My coworkers advise me to stop trying so hard, stop caring about things I cannot change. Do what I’m asked to do, and no more. But this isn’t who I want to be.

Recently I’ve been putting serious thought into what I want to do for the rest of my life. The changes in my thinking these past couple of years have opened my eyes to the possibilities and so I’m exploring options I never would have considered before. I want to contribute, make things better in a way that only I can. I want to collaborate with others, not compete. I want to use my creativity and imagination to build something not yet conceived by others.

In college I got degrees in Spanish and Linguistics. I was going to be a teacher, but honestly there were so many reasons I didn’t choose this path. I was afraid. I couldn’t imagine being in front of a class, the center of attention. An extra year of college would add to my growing student loans, a bill I was carrying without help from my parents. The government has crippled teachers’ ability to truly educate their students, insisting each follow a standard, requiring each to conform to the lowest common denominator. Leaving no child behind has resulted in all children being left behind.

So education is more of a rectangular hole, instead of the square one I am seeking.

Other options I’d consider would require additional formal education and as much as I truly enjoy learning, the idea of pursuing a master’s degree sounds dreadful, and that is not in line with how I want to spend the next couple of years. I may decide later to follow that path, but now is not the time.

And this is why I took another stab at writing. I don’t know that it will ever replace the income I receive through my day job, but I also don’t know that it won’t. There are many paths available and I’m exploring several. The book I’m publishing just a week from today is one path. Many years ago I taught writing to children through the recreation center where I lived in NH. That is another path I’m considering. Doors are opening, revealing more possibilities, more holes in which my peg may fit.

Truthfully, there are ways I could quit my job today and live the next couple of years without a full time job. It’s an option I’m considering but it’s hard to give up the security from the job I have. There is also a certain amount of freedom afforded when you have steady income, and I am not yet ready to let that go. But the thought is there, in the back of my mind.

So tell me, have you found your square hole? Have you decided to become a round peg instead? I’d love to hear your stories!

This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Mallet

I Now Have the Courage to Reveal My Authentic Self

It’s no secret that I’m new to writing. I have only been posting on this blog for about 2 months and in the first few weeks I struggled expressing what I wanted to say.

It was after I found these writing prompts and started writing what was in my heart instead of my head that I began to understand what was missing. I knew I had a story to tell, but my writing just wasn’t authentic. I was writing the way I had been taught to write. I was following the rules instead of following my heart. I was failing to share the part of me that truly makes me who I am.

And in thinking about today’s prompt I realized that this lack of authenticity when has at times carried over into other parts of my life as well.

After my divorce I struggled to understand who I was. For so long I defined myself in terms of that relationship, and as a mother. When I was suddenly spending so much time alone, it was scary. I started off doing the things I thought I should do, continuing on with certain habits that had served me during my marriage. But I came to realize that this wasn’t me. It wasn’t until I started reading and walking the beach, instead of watching the TV shows that had once been so important to me, that I began to feel true to myself.

And in doing so, I learned to be authentic with myself.

At work I was trying to prove myself as the new person on the team. Since I was working in IT for the first time I tried to act like I knew more than I did, instead of admitting how much I needed to learn. Eventually I realized that I would understand more, grasp ideas faster, if I asked more questions instead of pretending I already knew the answer. And I found that what I really do best is ask the right questions so that I can truly understand the problem that needs to be solved.

And in doing so, I learned to be authentic with my coworkers.

But where I’ve been the least authentic has been in my relationships. Early on I would meet new people and I’d have trouble opening up. Even simple irrefutable statements would fail to come out of my mouth when talking to someone. “The sky is blue.” was too difficult to say. I would repeat what I wanted to say over and over in my mind, completely unable to release the words. “The sky is blue. The sky is blue. The sky is blue. The sky is blue.” I let fear of what people would think hold back my ideas. Over time I began to push past this fear and participated in the conversations that were happening around me, and I was able to make real connections with people who have now become close friends.

And in doing so, I learned to be authentic with others.

I recently started talking to an old boyfriend, one who “knew me when.” The conversation we had showed how well I hid my true self. It turns out that even though we dated for about 9 months, he never really knew who I was. He knew the pleaser, the one who had no opinions and no standards. This is no longer who I am. I wonder what he’ll think of the new me.

And in doing so, I am learning to be authentic with men.

One of my very close friends said to me earlier this week that he can’t believe how far I’ve come in just the few years he’s known me. In the beginning I would sit next to him at an event, and I wouldn’t speak. Now I’m connecting with strangers virtually every day with little hesitation. I have definitely grown considerably. I am no longer the person I was, yet I’m not the person I plan to be. It will take more practice, more self-discovery, but I am learning to be authentic with the world.

This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Authentic

Who Are You in the Parallel Universe?

I believe a parallel universe exists; one in which we’ve made different choices, decisions that have led us down a different path. In this alternate world we are living our dreams. We are happy, healthy and at peace with our lives. Our work is meaningful to ourselves and others. We collaborate with those around us and always bring our best selves to each encounter. Here we are masters of our emotions, taming them so they add value and meaning without allowing them to steer our course.

Every day we face an almost infinite number of options, turns to take. Most we follow without even thinking, reasoning that fate, destiny or chance is in control. But what would happen if instead we paid closer attention to how we walked through life? If we truly saw each choice we made, would we make different decisions?

I see the parallel me, over there, just beyond my reach. I’m beginning to recognize where the path split, the one that led me to where I am instead of where I want to be. There is no going back. I can’t change the path I’m on; I can’t undo the choices I have made. Regretting them is futile and I refuse to succumb to the temptation to lament what could have been.

But now that I know, I can see the fork in the road ahead of me. I see where this universe splits and can connect with the parallel one. It’s so close I can almost reach out and touch it. I see the trail getting closer to this alternate me. One step at a time I will get there, until one day I will cross over and this will be my reality.

And then perhaps I will discover yet another parallel world to move toward.

This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Parallel

HEARTS MADE OF STONE

Do not let other people’s fears keep you trapped inside their box! ❤️

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Some people only like you
If you fit inside their box
Their box is filled with prejudice
Their condemnations never stop.

They’ll judge you and ostracize you
If they think you don’t fit in
They’ll make you feel inadequate
That’s where it all begins.

Who made them judge and jury?
Why are they sitting on the throne?
Who gave them all the power?
They need to change their tone.

They have no right to judge you
To make you feel so bad
They think they’re so above you
It’s all so very sad.

You musn’t let them hurt you
You‘re worth more than that
Stand up and value your self-worth
Come on, you must fight back.

They are just small minded
Hate and fear is all they’ve known
They lack true compassion
Because their hearts are made of stone.

* Please watch video below….

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Image from Google Images: musingsatapicnic.wordpress.com

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”Life is Limited..Live Unlimited ”

Don’t limit yourself to only what you think is possible!

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“Information is not knowledge.” ~Einstein

A few years ago I was lost. Frustrated. Scared. Unsure. Anxious. Trapped. Unfulfilled. Stuck in a dead-end job. Smothered by society’s expectations. Didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life.

I cared for myself enough to change my life, but I didn’t have the slightest clue where to start. I spent my days wishing that things would change—that I could escape a life that my soul could no longer bear.

The worst part of all, I was living the life that society had always told me to live. “Find a secure job, work hard,” they would say. “Get a solid job and work your way up the ladder.”

I don’t know about you, but it turns out that for me, the “right thing to do” sucked the joy out of life.

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Imagine feeling trapped in an unsatisfying existence. Wasting your precious time doing things that you really don’t want…

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Who I Am

Updated 4/7/2018…

Much like my life, I have just deleted everything I had previously written about myself and started over. Select All>Delete. New beginning.

I am a mother. Hmmmm…

I am a single mother. Almost…

I am a grateful single mother.

I lead an amazing life. It is busy, and full, and crazy in the best possible way. There is so much I am thankful for in my life.

And yet I want more. Scratch that. I want MUCH more.

I am learning that there really are endless possibilities. I have been so limited in my thinking, in what I thought was possible, that I failed to make the choices that would lead me to the life I truly deserve.

I thought that there was one “right” path, one way to be “successful.” I thought if I learned the formula I could achieve my goals. But what I’ve learned is that by doing this I limited myself to only the goals I could imagine. I limited myself to what I believed was possible. Because of this I was missing opportunities to choose the direction that I now feel I was meant to take.

I have always, from the time I was a little girl, wanted to write. I have always wanted to be an author. And yet, I let life push me around. I dabbled in writing here and there, but it was never as important as washing the dishes and folding the laundry. I put what I wanted to be doing behind what I felt needed to be done.

I let my lack of self-worth keep my dreams hidden. What my kids needed was more important. Making my friends happy mattered more. My job came first, well…third…but definitely ahead of me. Cooking, cleaning, mowing the lawn, painting the house…it all came ahead of the things that would truly make me happy.

I let fear and self-doubt control me. I worried about what people would think, if I would be good enough. “What if I fail?” “What if I waste all this time and nothing comes of it?”

In March of 2018 I decided to commit myself to writing, to make it my first priority instead of my last. And I learned that when you truly commit yourself you can achieve great things.

When I began writing here I had a plan, a designed purpose, something I wanted to achieve. But I struggled finding my voice. The words didn’t flow. It didn’t feel right. Then I started participating with the word prompt of the day and something beautiful happened. I stopped writing what I thought I was supposed to write and instead started writing what I was feeling.

And it was AWESOME.

The words just flowed. The more posts I wrote the easier it was for me to just let go of my plan and follow my heart. Sometimes I go back and reread what I’ve written and I’m simply amazed that these words came from me.

I’ve fallen in love with writing, and the WordPress community. I love connecting with people who read what I’ve written and I love reading what others have posted. This is an unbelievable journey and I’m grateful you’re joining me. Who knows where this may lead?

My name is Dianna (Dee) Kelly. It’s nice to meet you.

Myths and Magic, How Can They Show You the Way?

I want a genie, a magician who can grant my wishes…at least the top 3. I want to meet a wizard with a book of incantations who can make my dreams come true with just the right words. I want to find my fairy godmother with a magic wand who will listen to my deepest desires, then make them real with a snap of her wrist.

Surely one of them can help. I need to find the easy button, the quick route to the life I now believe I deserve. I’ve waited so long and I can’t wait anymore. Until my genie appears, I am willing to put in the effort, to take the risks, to push past my fears and do anything to reach my goal.

But I desperately want some bewitchment to give me courage. Until I can summon my magician, I will count on my friends, both new and old. I will soak up their love and support, bask in their encouragement and accept their assistance without shame. They make me stronger, not weaker.

However if I could get a spell that shows just the right path, highlights the correct direction to turn so I stop taking detours along the way, the distance would not be so far. Until my wizard reveals this, I will continue to learn from each mistake, the wrong turns teaching more than the right ones would have anyway.

Still if a sparkling wand should materialize it could grant me wisdom that would allow me to make my decisions wisely. Until my fairy godmother emerges from the mist, I will fully trust myself, have faith that the choices I am making are the right ones. And I will know that whatever happens as a result I am still moving forward.

I am finding out, starting to believe, that these magical beings exist, but not in human form. I have been searching high and low yet I’ve discovered that they may be in the one place I failed to look; it’s possible I can only find them within myself. If I can become completely silent and listen, truly hear, the answers can be found within me.

Shhhh….are you listening? I think I just heard something…

This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Genie

Bravely Living an Amazing Life!